The new Family Justice Center is located on Eastgate Loop. (Photo: Alina Hunter-Grah)

About 100 people attended Wednesday morning’s ribbon cutting of the city’sFamily Justice Center,which provides free services for victims ofsexual assault, human trafficking, elder abuse and domestic violence.

“This place is a space of healing,”Family Justice Center Director Dr. Valerie Radu said. “We want to celebrate hope andresilience.”

According to a national study from the Violence Policy Center, Tennessee ranks No. 5 in the nation in women murdered by men. (Photo: Alina Hunter-Grah)


The Family Justice Center has been operating out of another space, and it will officially move into its new locationon Eastgate Loop Nov. 22.

A range of social services will be available through the center, and dozens of local organizations are partnering to facilitate them, according to archives.

Leaders who joinedRadu at the event included Mayor Andy Berke, Police Chief Fred Fletcher,City CouncilwomanDr. Carol Berz, Judge Christie Sells and Child Advocacy Center of Hamilton CountyExecutive Director Shelley McGraw.

Berke said that the completion of the new center is an important milestone and part of the significant investment leaders are making in the Brainerd area.

There are pinwheels outside the center. Each pinwheel represents 10 domestic violence cases. So far in 2016, there have been more than 800 cases, Mayor Andy Berke said. (Photo: Alina Hunter-Grah)

“Today as a city we say, ‘We are here to help,'” Berke said.

Leaders said the center is designed to be inviting and not feel like a doctor’s office.

Fletcher discussed the importance of stopping rape culture.

“We can’t stop every crime, but we will care about every victim,” he said.

Berke and other leaders documented the morning on social media.